Re: The BuddyPress next generation API, the journey begins
I think that in some ways the question ‘what is BuddyPress’ jumps the gun at this stage. The question might rather be phrased ‘what could BuddyPress become once we’ve rewritten the core and API’? My guess is that BuddyPress will grow organically in ways that we cannot possibly foresee at this juncture. That’s the one of the strengths of Open Source projects.
Is it too late to start this process? Nah mate! Look at some other Open Source projects – Gallery photo album is on it’s second rewrite. Elgg developers not only rewrote the core/API they made the 1.0 totally incompatible with previous beta versions thus leaving a whole bunch of implementors high and dry (which is why I’m moving to BP)! My question is more, who is going to lead this process — you, Mr Maz? — and what role will Automattic have?
One issue that might be addressed in the core is your philosophy with regard to access controls. One of the built-in features of Elgg 0.9 which I found superficially attractive was the ability to set an access control on any object — blog post, file upload (but not comment) — and to add arbitrary access controls at the user level. However, in practice this often didn’t work out very well. Members of a closed Community blog had to remember to apply ‘community only access’ to each post that they made, they would frequently forget and thus expose content unintentionally. But I do think that looking at this example, and also how Mahara handles it’s file and blog access can help inform the sorts of access features we would like to see exposed by the API.
What might BuddyPress become? With flexible group and access control features it could become a premier eportfolio solution for example. Just my 2 penneth ………